iScience Surgical Inc.
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ForSight Labs LLC, the incubator founded in 2005 by The Foundry spun out its first company, Transcend Medical Inc., a company targeting glaucoma. Morgenthaler Ventures and Split Rock Partners teamed up to supply the company's first round of financing.
The clinical community has long been searching for a safe and effective surgical alternative to drugs for glaucoma, but the field has moved slowly. A decade ago, non-invasive laser procedures began earning a place as a second-line therapy with limited durability. Invasive surgeries are reserved for end-stage glaucoma because of their complexity, their serious complications, and their high failure rates. Venture firms believe a large, unmet clinical need represents a new $1 billion device market, and the pace of glaucoma device company creation is picking up.
VC-backed start-ups may need to think and act differently, perhaps more judiciously, about effective governance than more established firms. The stakes for start-ups are higher and the environment for failure is less forgiving than for established enterprises. In addition to their oversight role, directors at start-ups should be considered strategic assets. Developing a relation-based model built on a board/CEO partnership can increase the odds for success.
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